There appears to be some confusion among many consumers regarding the difference between an LCD television and an LED TV. For this reason, many people question exactly what is an LED TV? The simplest explanation is that an LED TV is a type of LCD television that utilizes light emitting diodes to light up the picture instead of the traditional fluorescent bulbs that have done the job over the past few decades. LDC refers to the electronics that make the TV work, while LED refers to the light source.
Two Forms of LEDs – Dynamic RGB (Full Array) and White-Edge
The question of what is an LED TV is answered, in part, with the answer of the types of LEDs available. LEDs currently come in two forms, Dynamic RGB LEDs, which are positioned behind the panel, allowing dimming to occur in locally specific areas of darkness on the screen resulting in truer blacks and whites, and a much higher dynamic contrast ratio. White-edge (Edge-lit) LEDs are positioned around the rim of the screen. This uses a special diffusion panel to spread light evenly behind the screen, allowing the television to become extremely thin.
LED TV Full Array and Edge Lit Advantages
When asking what is an LED TV, you might wonder which of the above type is better. Although they both have their advantages and disadvantages, the LCD televisions using edge-lit LCDs are usually super thin since their LED sources are on the side and are usually less expensive than LCD televisions using Full Array LED backlit technology. A great advantage to these types of lighting is they use less power than a plasma TV or those lit with fluorescent tubes.
Other Advantages to the LED TV
Due to the backlighting updates in the LED TVs, plasma televisions no longer have the advantage when it comes to creating deep blacks with saturated colors. LED televisions can also produce an image with a greater contrast, are as thin as 1” thick, can offer a wider color gamut, cause less environmental pollution upon disposal, and generally have a much lower power consumption, averaging 20 – 30%. For those with limited space, the LED television may be the perfect solution.
Disadvantages to the LED TVs
When asking what is an LED TV, you have to know the disadvantages as well. LCD TVs that use LEDs across the back of the display can create sharply deeper blacks, creating “local dimming”. When a dark scene is on the television, the LEDs in that area of the screen can be shut off completely, allowing no light to leak through, darkening the entire screen. If you cut back on the dimming, the blacks will then be less dark than blacks in another part of the image that are not surrounded by lighter images, making for a less well-perceived scene.
When shopping for a LCD / LED television, take a trip to a large store that has many models on display. Take a look at both the Edge and Full Array backlighting to see which type of backlighting looks best to you. The tips in this article should help to answer the question of “What is an LED TV?”